Publix, Trader Joe’s & Aldi Top Customer Experience Ratings.

PublixBased on a study of 10,000 U.S consumers, Publix and Trader Joe’s earned the highest scores in the 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings, ranking 246 companies across 19 industries. Joining those firms in the top 12 spots are Aldi, Chick-fil-A, Amazon.com, Sam’s Club, H.E.B., Dunkin’ Donuts, Save-a-Lot, Sonic Drive-In, Little Caesar’s, and Ace Hardware.

While grocery chains, fast food chains, and retailers dominate the top of the Temkin Experience Ratings, health plans earn the dubious distinction of defining poor performance, taking seven of the 15 lowest spots. The five lowest scoring organizations are: US Airways, Time Warner Cable, Days Inn, Empire BCBS, and 21st Century.

In this year’s ratings, 37% of companies earned “good” or “excellent” scores, while 28% are rated as “poor” or “very poor.” Companies with at least a “good” rating grew by nine percentage points since 2012 and by 21 points since 2011. Of the 203 companies that are included in both the 2012 and 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings, 57% firms had at least a modest increase. The companies that made the largest improvement over 2012 are Citibank, TriCare, TD Ameritrade, Office Depot, EarthLink, Hardees, and Regions Bank.

“It’s wonderful to see that customer experience is improving, although many companies still have a long way to go,” states Bruce Temkin, managing partner of Temkin Group.

In its third year of publication, the 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings examines customer experience across 19 industries: airlines, appliance makers, auto dealers, banks, car rental agencies, computer makers, credit card issuers, fast food chains, grocery chains, health plans, hotel chains, insurance carriers, Internet service providers, investment firms, parcel delivery services, retailers, software firms, TV service providers, and wireless carriers.

The Temkin Experience Ratings evaluates three areas of customer experience: functional (can customers do what they want to do?), accessible (how easy is it to work with the company?), and emotional (how do consumers feel about their interactions?).

Here are some additional findings from the research:

  • The companies with ratings that most outperform their industry averages are TriCare (health plans), USAA (insurance), credit unions (banks), Kaiser Permanente (health plans), Advantage (rental cars), AOL (Internet services), USAA (banks), Marriott (hotels), Charles Schwab (investment firms), and Alaska Airlines (airlines).
  • The companies with ratings that most underperform their industry averages are Days Inn (hotels), RadioShack (retailers), 21st Century (insurance carriers), US Airways (airlines), Motel 6 (hotels), HSBC (banks), Morgan Stanley (investment firms), Apple Store (retailers), and HSBC (credit cards).
  • Leaders in functional experience are Publix, Trader Joe’s, and Costco. Laggards are Dollar and US Airways.
  • The leader in accessible experience is Ace Hardware. Laggards are Medicaid, Days Inn and US Airways.
  • The leader in emotional experience is Publix. Laggards are Time Warner Cable and US Airways.
  • Of the 18 industries that were in both this year’s and last year’s ratings, 11 earned higher scores in 2013. Wireless carriers improved the most, while appliances declined the most.

The 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings along with other ratings can be accessed at the Temkin Ratings website, www.TemkinRatings.com.



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Christopher Durham

Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan).

Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s.
Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago.

Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.